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THE REFORMATION AND' EDUCATION       191

From the city schools and the State schools were developed the
gymnasia, which from that day to this have been the most im-
portant schools of Germany. The growth of popular schools,
made inevitable by the fundamental tenets of Protestantism, took
place more slowly. The earliest were those established by John
Bugenhagen (1485-1558) in the towns and villages of North
Germany, to provide instruction in religion and in reading and
writing the mother tongue; but it was not till 1559 &&
such schools got official recognition anywhere. In that year
the school ordinances of Wurtemberg made provision for
" German schools " in villages, and this example was followed
later by Saxony, the State which shared with Wurtemberg the
honour of leading the way in educational matters at this critical
time.

Among the great men to whose efforts Protestant Germany
owed the creation of her educational institutions, Philip
Melanchthon (1497-1560) stands out as the first and the greatest.
In a long and arduous career, extending over forty years spent
in working out the theological groundwork of the new faith,
he devoted himself to an extraordinary variety of educational
enterprises. He made the university of Wittenberg the centre
of Protestant studies by his own lectures on the classics and on
theology ; he kept a private school in his house for youths going
on to the study of the arts, and wrote a series of grammatical and
other textbooks so admirable that some of them were still in use
in the Eighteenth Century; he established the school systems
of several towns (notably in Saxony), re-organized some of the
old universities like Heidelberg, and organized the new Protestant
universities of Marburg, Konigsberg, and Jena. The title of
Prceceptor Germanice, which is his by general consent, was assuredly
well deserved.

The German secondary school system was largely his creation.
From the time when he drew up the constitution and arranged
the curricula for the first Protestant higher schools at Eisleben.
and Nuremberg in 1525, his advice on all matters concerning
educational organization was in constant demand among his
co-religionists. His correspondence with fifty-six cities regarding
the founding and conduct of schools is still extant to indicate
his enormous labours in this sphere. But his influence was more
than personal. The school ordinances he wrote at various times